Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Expectation Vs Reality

My loves at Redcliffe Lagoon

You know those 'Expectation vs Reality' photos you see on Facebook? Like the one of the Mother and child all dressed in white, sleeping sweetly snuggled in together under the 'expectation' side of co-sleeping, and then the baby sleeping on the Mother's head on crumpled sheets in the 'reality' shot? I giggle at those things, because so much of parenting seems like that. Expectations not met by reality. Not that a baby sleeping on your head is a bad thing, it's just not how you imagined it. It didn't stop me from bed sharing, or getting morning cuddles in bed after a feed.

Pre-children expectations, I had so many. Lately I'be been remembering how I would cringe when parents would laughingly say they couldn't wait for their children to go back to school. I was horrified and inwardly shook my head, naively promising myself that I would never say such a thing. I wondered if they were lazy or selfish, or if perhaps, I admit it, they had out of control children? (Ha!) I vowed that I would enjoy having my children home. We would explore, craft, play, read, draw and have a wonderful time on holidays and I wouldn't want to send them back to school. Please feel free to laugh at my foolishness.

Because here I am, five weeks in to the six weeks of holiday between Prep and Grade one, feeling the need to confess - I am rather looking forward to Cohen going back to school. Not because we haven't been exploring, crafting, playing, reading and drawing. We have, and it's been wonderful. Not because my son often has an age appropriate inability to listen and needs to be told simple instructions several times before again ignoring them. He does that regardless. But rather because my six year old son and my two year old daughter really seem to need that six hour break to stem them incessantly irritating each other. That bit of space five days a week seems to make the heart grow fonder and the play nicer.

Oh the fighting, the intentional annoying, the shriek and screams and 'he pushed me's'. The toy throwing, hair pulling, biting, lego breaking, paper scrunching, food stealing, sibling rivalry of it all. It has only increased a little more each week, despite my very best efforts to the contrary. Oh, the refereeing is exhausting! Having all three children to contend with each day on my own can be a little too much of a good thing.

So if you bump in to me and ask me about our holidays, yes they've been wonderful. I shall indeed be sad to see Cohen go back to school, though I am excited for him starting grade one. I will miss the long lazy mornings, the pancakes for breakfast during the week, the day trips and projects and afternoons spent with friends. I will miss the sweet moments of all three children climbing in to bed for cuddles and the golden moments when they are playing sweetly. But I get it, I do, I understand now why the return to school can be so alluring. I'm sorry I judged.

Only one week to go!


It seems Mike gets it.
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